Prof. dr. sc. Tamara Perišin, MJur (Oxon)


Guest profressors: 

Judge Miro Prek, General Court of the European Union

James Flett, European Commission Legal Service, WTO Team



- attendance
- short paper* or exam (alternatively, to be chosen by each student).
*The paper is specially recommended for students who would afterwards like to develop the paper into a dissertation.


Please note that the assigned reading material which are not available through this website (e.g. book excerpts) are available at our Merlin e-learning website




Unit 1 - Introduction into EU and WTO law

Thursday, 18 October 2018, 10.00-12.00, Ćirilometodska 4, classroom no. II (ground floor, left)

Objectives: understanding the role of the EU in the world and how its internal market afects world trade and values.

- Handout (distributed in class)

- C-434/15 Asociacion Profesional Elite Taxi v Uber Systems Spain, request for a preliminary ruling

     Compare with Glyca Trans. LLC v. City of New York, No. 8962/15 (N.Y. Sup. Ct. Queens Cty. Sept.8, 2015)

European Commission Press Release: Commission decides selective tax advantages for Fiat in Luxembourg and Starbucks in the Netherlands are illegal under EU state aid rules, Brussels, 21 Oct. 2015 (Links to an external site.)

T-209/01 and T-210/02 Honeywell v. Commission and General Electric v. Commission -- Press Release No. 109/05,14 December 2005 (Links to an external site.)



There will be no class on 25 October and 1 November 2018.


Unit 2 - Pecuniary restrictions on the movement of goods – Customs & Taxes 

Thursday, 8 November 2018, 10.00, Ćirilometodska 4, classroom no. II (ground floor, left)

Objectives: To understand that the level of integration which the EU seeks to achieve goes well beyond the level of integration aimed at in the WTO. On the one hand, European law completely bans customs between its Member States. On the other hand, WTO law merely seeks to ensure the application of the most favoured nation principle and seeks to gradually lower customs through subsequent rounds of negotiations.

To analyse how the underlying differences between the EU and WTO are reflected in the area of indirect taxes. The EU bans discriminatory taxes from being applied to goods from other Member States. In the WTO, the case law is far from settled but it seems that only taxes having a discriminatory purpose are prohibited (i.e. that discriminatory effects do not suffice to find a tax contrary to WTO law).



There is no class on 15 November 2018 as that week is the exam week at the Zagreb Faculty of Law.


Unit 3   Non-pecuniary restrictions on the movement of goods 

- Thursday, 22 November 2018, 10.00, Ćirilometodska 4, classroom no. II

Objectives: investigating the level of trade liberalisation in the area of non-pecuniary (non-fiscal) trade restrictions. Understanding that Art. 34 TFEU (ex Art. 28 EC) goes well beyond requiring non-discrimination and that ever since Dassonville and Cassis, it was clear that other types of obstacles to trade can also be prohibited. The interpretation of Art. 34 TFEU relies on the measure's effects on market access. In contrast, comparable WTO rules Arts. III, XI GATT do not go beyond the requirement of non-discrimination (as they do not even ban all types of discrimination, but instead only intentional discrimination). However, there are WTO cases concerning the TBT and SPS agreements which suggest that these agreements move beyond non-discrimination.


Understanding that there are relatively narrow areas of WTO where its trade liberalisation goes beyond the requirement of non-protectionism and in this way slightly approaches the EU model.

The TBT and SPS agreements have a role in greater deregulation by requiring the removal of not only protecitionist measures, but also of other measures not based on science. For example, the case law has demonstrated that the SPS prevents, firstly, protectionism and, secondly, other unnecessary trade restrictions of two kinds: one kind are measures adopted for the achievement of a higher level of protection than provided for by the relevant international standard if these measures are not based on a risk assessment; and the other are measures maintained without being “objectively and rationally” connected with scientific evidence. Similarly, the TBT, apart from preventing protectionism, also prevents the adoption of national measures which are not based on an existing international standard if this standard is “effective or appropriate” in fulfilling that country’s legitimate objectives.

The TBT and SPS also have a role in promoting mutual recognition and international standardisation. 



Arts. 34-36 TFEU (ex Art. 28-30 EC) v. Arts. III:4, XI, XX GATT;

TBT and SPS Agreements;


EU cases:

8/74 Procureur du Roi v. Dassonville [1974] ECR 837;

- 120/78 Rewe-Zentrale AG v. Bundesmonopolverwaltung fur Branntwein [1979] ECR 649, Cassis de Dijon;

C-267-8/91 Criminal proceedings against Keck and Mithouard [1993] ECR I-609716;


GATT/WTO cases

US - Tuna/Dolphinunadopted GATT Panel report; see facts; paras 5.8-5.16, 7.1;

EC – Asbestos, AB Report, WT/DS135/AB/R, 12/03/2001; see facts, paras 88-141; 149-154.U

EC Hormones, AB Report, WT/DS26/AB/R, WT/DS48/AB/R, 16 January 1998, see facts; paras 188-209. 

EC Sardines, AB Report, WT/DS231/AB/R, 26 September 2002, see facts and legal provisions; paras 234-261;276-291.


- T. Perišin, Free Movement of Goods and Limits of Regulatory Autonomy in the EU and WTO, T.M.C. Asser Press, The Hague, 2008, p 17-80, 127-195: 


There is no class on 15 November 2018 as that week is the exam week at the Zagreb Faculty of Law.


Unit 4 – EU public health standards and world trade

Monday, 29 Nov 2018, 10.00, Ćirilometodska 4, classroom no. II (ground floor, left)

Objetives: to understand how EU's health standards affect world trade, the interpretation of WTO rules and the globalization of standards.


Arts. III:4, XI, XX GATT

TBT and SPS Agreements;

EC Hormones, AB Report, WT/DS26/AB/R, WT/DS48/AB/R, 16 January 1998, see facts; paras 188-209.

EC – Asbestos, AB Report, WT/DS135/AB/R, 12/03/2001; see facts, paras 88-141; 149-154

- Memorandum of Understanding between the US and the EC, 2009

- Memorandum of Understanding between Canada and the EC, 2011

- EC - Biotech, Panel Report, see p. 28-38; and p. 1067-1076.                                                                                                                                                                         


Unit 5 – EU environmental, climate change and energy standards and trade disputes

Monday, 6 Dec, 2018, 10.00, Ćirilometodska 4, classroom no. II (ground floor, left)

Objectives: to understand how EU internal rules on energy and climate change affect the world, especially to understand their trade effects as seen in disputes before the CJEU and in the WTO; to asses the coherence of EU's unilateral, plurilateral and multilateral action in these fields.



- C-366/10, Air Transport Association of America     

- Perišin, Pending EU Disputes in the WTO: Challenges to EU Energy Law and Policy 

Scott, Rajamani, EU Climate Change Unilateralism, EJIL (2012) p. 469



Unit 6 - Guest speaker, Judge Miro Prek, General Court of the European Union



Unit 7 – EU animal welfare standards and trade disputes

Monday, 10 Jan 2019, 10.00, Ćirilometodska 4, classroom no. II (ground floor, left)


C-424/13 Zuchtvieh-Export          


Seal Products (WTO AB Reports, WT/DS4008401/AB/R, 22/05/2014 --  (Links to an external site.)overview of the disputes initiated by Canada and Norway (Links to an external site.)

2015/177 (New) Seal Products Regulation (Links to an external site.)

- T. Perisin, "Is the EU Seal Products Regulation a Sealed Deal? . . ."

- R. Howse and J. Langille, "Permitting Pluralism: The Seal Products Dispute and Why the WTO Should Permit Trade Restrictions Justified by Non-Instrumental Moral Values"


Economist, “After the Horse Has Been Bolted” (Links to an external site.)

             Compare with Cavel Intern., Inc. v. Madigan, 500 F.3d 551 (7th Cir. 2007)                                                                                                                                                 



Unit 8 - Bilateral trade agreements
Thursday, 17 Jan 2019, 10.00, Ćirilometodska 4, classroom no. II (ground floor, left)

Objectives: to understand the effects that the new generation of bilateral agreements such as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (EU and US) and the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (EU and Canada) could have; to analyze the possible effects on global regulatory standards and global welfare; to understand the pros and cons of different modes of solving investor - state disputes.



T. Perišin, Transatlantic Trade Disputes...       

- Background information on the Investment Court System     

- CETA - just have a look at the Table of Contents to get an idea about the agreement's coverage.                                                                                                                                  


Unit 9 - EU Trade v. Privacy and Data Protection
Thursday, 24 Jan 2019, 10.00, Ćirilometodska 4, classroom no. II (ground floor, left)

Objectives: to understand how EU rules on data protection and privacy have implications for its external trade in goods and services as well as on the establishment of companies 


Case C-131/12 Google Spain SL and Google Inc. v. AEPD and Gonzalez 

Case C-293&594/12 Digital Rights 

Case C-362/14 Maximilian Schrems v. Data Protection Commissioner 


Please notice that all the units are being updated and modified as the course is in progress. 

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